The book of Matthew describes him as a teacher and lover of all who come to him. He loves us with all of our fears, failures, and our broken promises. Most of what Jesus taught was love, acceptance, and forgiveness.
I believe His desire for His followers is for us to do the same.
It is true that Christ did plenty of rebuking; however, the people He rebuked were using religion to abuse and hurt others. Are Christians today that much different?
In the book, Unchristian, author David Kinnaman describes the top things Christians are known for among America’s younger generation. It’s very sobering.
He describes how Christians are known for being hypocritical, too involved in politics, and judgmental. Is this the legacy we are leaving for ourselves?
In the United States, the numbers of Christian divorces and Christian kids growing up in broken homes are just as high as among non-Christians. What does this say about how we love? What about Christians burning Korans and getting into fights with people of other religions?
Are we known for our love, or have we forgotten Jesus’ command?
In 2011, I took my sponsor trip to El Salvador, and I was able to see what Jesus was talking about in John 13. I was able to see children who lived in neighborhoods with lots of crime, little clean water, and no electricity.
However, when I looked into the eyes of those children, I didn’t see any poverty. I saw children who were cared for and who wanted to share love with others. This is what the world needs to see.
It is my prayer that we as Christians can get back to and really focus on John 13:34–35. This is how the world will know we are Christ’s disciples.
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” —John 13:34–35, NIV
Prayer: God, help us take seriously your command to love. May the world know we are yours because of the way we love. Amen.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Tony Brizendine works as an IT Service Desk Technician at the Global Ministry Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Read all the One in Spirit devotionals.